After Nursing Student Kills Self, Kolkata’s Medical College Forms Panel to Study ‘Lifestyle’ Issues

Kolkata: After a first-year nursing student at the National Medical College (NMC) in Kolkata took her life as she struggled with the language barrier in her studies, the institute has set up a four-member panel to tackle ‘lifestyle’ issues faced by students hailing from rural areas.

Unable to understand lectures in English, Samapti had committed suicide by hanging herself in her hostel on November 16. A suicide note was found from the student’s hostel that hints that she was depressed because she was unable understand her lectures in English, being more comfortable in Bangla. The note also suggests that she was worried about a Rs 5 Lakh loan her father taken for her higher studies.

“This is a serious issue. Someone took such an extreme step because of their lifestyle, language and family background. To prevent any further incidents the college has decided to establish this committee to understand the root cause of the problem,” said a senior professor of the Nursing Department, NMC.

The college has started one-on-one interactions with students, as well as their friends, family and teachers in order understand the challenges they face while attending lectures, the professor added.

It was learnt that during Durga Puja vacation, Samapti went to her home town in Bankura district and told her father that she don’t want to continue Nursing studies. But her father – a house painter by profession – convinced her to continue the Nursing course as this will help her in future.

The NMC has also roped in some of the well-known psychologists in the city to counsel students, to help them overcome their inferiority complex, along with other mental health issues.

Dr Tanmoy Mitra, a renowned Psychologist in Kolkata who is attached to National Institute of Behavioural Sciences, termed the incident as alarming. “We call it impulse control. It is a disorder in which a person finds it difficult to control their emotions and ends up taking extreme steps impulsively,” he explained.

“I think college professors should be more sensitive and they should give message to all the students that they are there to help them resolve any issues. Teaching staffs have to build confidence among students and create an atmosphere where students don’t hesitate to ask anything irrespective of the languages they are comfortable with,” he said.

In a similar incident, a first-year physics student of Kolkata’s St Xavier’s College Hrisheek Koley was found dead on the railway tracks between Uttarpara and Hindmotor stations in August. He hailed from Singur in Hooghly and had left the AJC Bose Road hostel telling his friends saying he was going to buy a bucket.

Then, the cops had found a suicide note that spoke about his inability to understand lectures in English and problem in adjusting with city lifestyle.